July 30, 2018

Everything Turned Upside Down

Everything Turned Upside Down

Up is down and down is up. I had read that some time ago on one of those Alternative websites. Only now as I look at what is going on in my life does it seem real. Usually I wait until I experience something then go looking. Sometimes I research, but not too far. Prescribing to the philosophy that it is wiser to have some experience with something before making up your mind. It's mostly why I prescribe now to a more Mystical Path.

I try not to write about what I haven't experienced in some way. There is no sense for me in seeking dark places just for curiosity or fun, but because I'm called to go there. It is far better for me to remain in the light rather than seek the darkness. Even though, I do often find myself being thrust into the shadow places. It usually happens that what I end up with has to be integrated with the light to form a wholeness. It all works out for the greater good. Where I am at that time on my path.

This time everyting has been torn apart completely. All things pushing, pulling being destroyed in oppostite directions—until no place to go. So much less "doing' now. Being—only in faith. Trusting in the path—the journey.

The death and destruction of who I was—so much that had to be cleared. It has been devastating. As I surrender to it, I know in my heart so much of my old life had to go. It was extremely frightening at first to see how much had to go. Some days it still is, but my strength is slowly coming back. My faith once again renewed—my hope restored. It takes time, especially because so much was destroyed this time. There has been so much loss.

Things have a way of seeming to be one way, but often turn into something else. Up is down and down is up. What can seem so horrible can be a blessing. When first in your life the tendency is to resist, to feel oppressed, rejected—alone without hope and faith. That is the awful, horrible place. It can be really, really bad. Each time I go through the process I think I'm done. I won't have to do more. I have had enough obstacles, setbacks, rotten things happen to me, but I have just about always looked back and been grateful. This time no different, but it had been really horrible this time.

"Go to a homeless shelter," she said. In shock I could not breath or speak. After working 20 years on my home and also a Summer place and other properties from having taken care of inlaws. I was told I would be homeless. This woman who was suppose to be my lawyer and defend me was telling me I had nothing. So frightened—I thought I would die.

"Why me," why now, why is this happening—I pleaded and prayed at night to God. "How is this possible?" To have no home after doing everything I could to have a home. It being one of the most important things in my life since I was a little girl. The first Judge I went before basically said nothing. "You married him," he said. He being my exhusband. My marriage ending and with it everyting I thought I had—my home one of them. Subsequent Judges were no more sympathetic.

"Go walk the streets," they said after taking my car. This is when things started to get surreal. Having had some experience with this sort of thing before. I knew something bigger was going on. I was not doing this—something or someone else was. Yes, I had some responsiblity—I did get married, but this just does not happen to someone. It was so over the top. Everyting in my life being violently ripped away. "Your a prostitute," they said. My god what was going on?

I remember that beautiful night, 6 years ago when I believed that everyting would finally be okay. It was the final get-together for the Summer. The "Ring of Fire" on the Lake. Mostly when the "Snowbirds" leave and us locals know things will get much quieter. The last party, holiday, summer fun, romance before the cold sets in. Many off to Florida, NY where it is warmer. I had no idea the nightmare that was to begin.

I had worked so hard. Finally being able to downshift to an easier schedule. Years of having tenants was now finally paying off and I could enjoy extra income from the rental business I started with my exhusband and promises from inlaws I took care of. Live in a single-family home and look forward to being semi-retired—finally having an actual "Studio." Something I had dreamed about since I was a little girl, when I learned I could no longer take ballet. My third grade teacher telling me I was good at Drawing and Art, to which I promptly started to channel my hurt and energies there. Holding full-time "day jobs" and working at night to make my dream come true of earning a living being a real "Artist." Building a successful career so I could finally have enough to do the work I really loved full-time on my own schedule.

So here I was being told "nothing was mine" and to go live in a homeless shelter. It was devastating to say the least, but that wasn't just any last night of Summer. I had been on the Sacandaga Lake, NY for over 20 years. Owning a place there shortly after getting married. As a little girl my Dad use to bring me to the camping grounds close by. There were officially 20 "Rings of Fire," but this one proved to shatter everyting in my life I thought I had. So much of who I thought I was. So much of what I loved. I was never to be the same again.

I'm still unraveling the Mystical experience of it all. I have been homeless a few times now. I have slept in my car. I have had to break into the Lakehouse I thought I would retire from just to have a place to stay—removed by the StatePolice and told it was no longer mine. I have been so frightened I thought I would die. My cherished beliefs about home completely turned upside down—way more "Down" than up.

The thing is here I am with you and I am writing about being homeless. I am sharing my experiences and making new friends—becoming stronger again! In touch with a self I use to know. I had left her when I married and here she was—pissed I left her. Well, more sad than angry, but she was somewhat wild and had to be dealt with because it had been so long since I had seen her or let her play—let her go anywhere. A part of myself denied, denigrated—no place for her in my life of being a "good wife." Accepted by me at first, but then forced into the role. At the end of my marriage—violently.

You ready to pack a suitcase and leave. I can remember a time when I was first married and had a panic attack about how much "stuff" I was accumulating. I had always loved being able to just go. I had already done some traveling and looked forward to more. When I married, having a "Summer place" became a place my exhusband said would replace "going places." It became my prison. The isolation almost killing me. The freedom now at first so overwhelming, so distant, I thought I would die. In many ways parts of myself have—the false ones. Needing to remember how to "Fly" again.

My wings beat and in places broken, but they are healing. The words spill across this page and I'm less afraid of not having a "home." Home once again being inside—I had forgotten. I'm remembering to dream again. It took everything to be turned upside down. I can tell you it's still not okay, but it's getting better. Coming home once again to the self I left behind. Knowing that last night on the lake before everyting fell apart was a place that in fact everyting is being put back together.

I still don't have a home. I'm not sure where I'm going. This blog is not one where I tell you how great things are and what a wonderful life I have. But, I'm writing and for that I'm grateful. It is not something I would have done before all this happened. Some things turn upside down, but actually they are right side up. It becomes one of perspective and attitude. You often have to wait and be patient before the magic happens. You stay the course and it does, but not without pain. The pain is still very real, very raw. Each day a little more gets done. The discipline of moving forward takes shape once again. The words spill across the page and one more day unfolds and I have a little more faith—a little more hope that things are getting better. Slowly, some days excruciatingly so, but simpler, gentler, moving to a better place even if that place does not have a physical space yet.


July 15, 2018

Violence

Violence

There has been so much lately. Submerging me in a sea of old memories, new traumas, deeper cuts—a sea of hate.

Back with family, feeling like 16—its been so long. The shadows of the past pushing against my life once again. Old demons that I thought were contained—stalk again. Bigger, stronger, testing my strength. Seems they never really leave, but slither around waiting in dark corners to see how good you get—how much can you take. The friction moving you along on your path—can you keep going?

For so long, I surrounded my self in a shield against violence. The more insulation the better. Growing up in neighborhoods that weren't always so great—I vowed not have that kind of drama in my life ever again. Seems quaint now—1970 small town upstate New York. It wasn't New York City of course, but we had the streets, the violence, the bars, the characters, the places you didn't go alone. The cops, the crooks, the stories, the experiences of violence.

The insulation became isolation. Protecting myself became a constant goal. Creating a life to insure I would be safe, calm—no drama zone. The house clean, the laundry done. The good wife was home, happy doing her chores. Married, taking care of everyone and everything. Determined to have that happy home life. The quiet, peaceful street where bad things do not really happen and if they do, things are easilty resolved because there is always enough. Enough money, time, friends, people who can help you whenever the danger gets too close. Whenever things even remotely get close to being out of control and things are always so out of control in certain neighborhoods.

What happens when the monsters you protected yourself from, shielded from in a "nice life" that you thought so decent were actually always on the inside all along. There from the start, like running in the woods into a cave thinking your safe, but only to find the wolf is lurking in the shadows as you build the door to keep you safe inside. He waits ever so quietly, so many years. Slowly his smells, manner, movements become yours. He knows you so well. He stalks your every move until one day you realize he was there all along. Reality shatterred—facing death.

He always moved so quietly. Ever so stealth. Over time you trusted your place in the quiet of the woods thinking you were free as you came and went. He knew and you came to know, but what you thought you knew was nothing of the sort. He was the horrible darkness you thought was light. The spaces where time is not what it seems. Where monsters dwell. Where everything you thought was good, twisted turned into something else. The good wife existed, but she had never been safe. She played house in a place that seemed light, but was actually constructed, manipulated by the demon that was there all along—dark! He would whisper such love, devotion, promises, but all of it lies. Echoes of dreams she thought had come true, but were all deceptions. Lies she was told over and over again. Seducing her, raping her, condemning her. The shatterring almost killing her.

The grim of fairy tales. The wolf pretending to be grandma. Little red riding hood knowing, but yet too close, too trusting. She can see his teeth, the furl of his lip, the sneering of his words. Mesmerized by the hypnotic pull of his sensual allure, but on some level knowing things are not what they seem. Yet, she must somehow learn something before she can escape, but what? The predator becomes teacher. She learns the way she must go, but first she has to understand he is so close. How did he get so close? How was she so deceived? How was it all so planned before she could even understand he had been there all along?

"Your a monster now," she told him. He bent over seemingly in pain. Finally able to articulate what had taken her so long to understand. She knew he didn't feel so it wasn't really pain. If he had felt he never would have deceived her so, using her for so much. The rape of her sexuality, the attempt to destroy her soul, her life, her happiness. To bring alive his own dying one—the dance of death.

Up through the depths of the brokeness to once again survive, heal, move forward. Only this time accepting that the violence, anger and all the darkness I tried to protect myself from will always somehow be stalking me. Family can be that way. The shadows of generations, the patterns of abuse, the demons we have to deal with don't really go away—we just get better at dealing with them. We get stronger and they get weaker, but continue to test us.

Too much this, too much that, too much of anything without awareness. We live in a violent world. Its woven in all our relationships. How its expressed—the secrets. Quiet and covert, open and accepted. The fabric of interacting.

If I had known how bad people really were as a kid, I probably never would have survived. I had to believe the old adage that everyone is really good deep down. There was so much violence as a kid I chose this belief, but at midlife know its not true. Left to their own devices, people can be pretty horrible. Nobility is not losing your shit when things go bad. Doing what is good and decent in the midst of the horror of life. Being able to stay true to caring, kindness, doing as little harm as possible when no one is around to watch or check you. When you think no one is watching can you still do good? Do you want to? Good can be complex. We sometimes have to be bad to be good. I'm learning to fight again. I had forgotton how. I was numb, a doormat.

The monsters wait quietly for you. The darkness revealing the light. The ying yang, black and white, the checkerboard of life. We move on in this duality of reality. The wolf is ever always so close. Sometimes so obvious and other times so obsecure that he becomes our friend, our lover, our husband, mother, father, brother, sister. The petty tyrants you grow up with. The family stalkers that hate you, the work mates that want to see you fail, the lovers that are envious. The violence that in accepting you become better able to cope with. The acknowledgement that evil is real and not something to continually pretend does not exist. The illusions of sanity, the dysfunction of relationships, the distortions of love.

Kicked out of an illusion after so long and finally learning the truth can be devastating. So many of the problems all along was the monster on the inside. There was never a good marriage, but there was a good wife. We often have to have something come around a couple of times to really learn.

Understanding our lessons, more of our life, more of the violence we grew up with and continue to attract. It all makes us tronger and more able to deal with. The complexity breaking us open to ultimately love even more. Not to condone violence, but to know how much its a part of life. We can never really be free of it. Even the most seemingly nice places can deep down be hells unimaginable. Things are often not what they seeem. Pretty homes, pretty things, pretty people can be monsters. We learn as kids not to judge books by covers, but evil becomes more complex, deeper as we move within the labyrinthine of it. As our skills increase or lack of, so does it.

I'm stronger now. Facing what was there all along, but needing to know before I could move on. The deep fear was there from the start, but I didn't recognize it. So busy trying to build a life free from violence, not fully understanding the predator can be so close. Can be so nice, so kind, seemingly so good and yet be so awful, so horrible. Evil in the attempts to destroy both physically and psychically. So stealth, I never saw him at first. I never saw her either. In some ways neither really male or female, but a corrupt, distorted twisted energy that claims to be human, but in many ways a failure of what it means to care, to have compassion, to have empathy—basic decency.

My marriage ended violently. The spiritual part way before the other parts. My sexuality used, broken by a man who never loved me from the start. The rest of the life I thought we had shattered in a similiar way. His destruction complete. Mirroring what he has become to me. "I'm a Devils saint," he sneered at the end. I thought he was mentally ill. I still do. Creating such a horrible reality from the start while pretending to love someone is insane. Living in this way for so long, being told all the time it was me that there was "something wrong with you," is devastating. Each day coming to terms with the violence that was there all along. The wolf had always been so close, but now I emerge from that place I thought I was safe and learn I'm much safer now for having fought and defeated the demon. There is damage, but mostly material things that can be replaced. My soul, spirit and self intact. To fight another day, to survive, to go on. Accepting that the darkness is always there.

If you don't get angry you get even they say. Anger is not evil, but the deceit that allows hatred to grow, grudges and revenges to be cultivated into death or murder is. The premeditated harm to someone. The slow destruction of their soul over a period of many, many years is in fact evil. Diabolically insane and yet there is always love intwined. Sometimes it can be extremely difficult to find and take a long time, but its there. The saving grace of hope, healing—the divine ingelligence. We all walk through the valley of death. We all die. To be brave enough to die over and over again. To start again stronger and less fearful.

For me to give up the illusion of what I thought I had—the good marriage even if not perfect. To replace that dream with a more realistic one now. To be a person not a role. To be a woman not an object, to be an individual not a prop for someone else. To give, but also take. To not be a slave to some promised reality that never came. A future that arrived in a horrible way after so many promises that were basically all lies. When everything seemed so perfect and it was time to enjoy it all the rug was horribly and violently pulled out from under me.

I'm not 16 I just feel that way, I tell myself. Staying with my mother, going around certain things again is the spiral pattern of change, recovery and growth. We already are arguing, but things are different now—I''m different. Less afraid of her, of old secrets, lies and family hate. Much less afraid of the violence I grew up with. Its still pretty bad having been attacked yet again, but consciousness is far better than unconsciousness.

Fighting up through the illusions once again. To see in ways prevented before. Violence can do that. Things become crystal clear, precise like. The quiet, calm, electrified time before a thunderstorm when the hairs stand up on the back of your neck. The darkness more painful, but the love deeper—joy becomes bliss. Moving away from the old story into a new one. Moving on—the light brighter, sexuality deeper, libido stronger, after having been so eclipsed by hate for so long.


July 8, 2018

Welfare Kid

Welfare Kid

The StatePolice arrived at the Lakehouse. Soaking wet, on the beach, I was trying to wash-up a bit after having no water on for four months. The water was never turned on. Another sadistic punishment to hide what was unfolding all around the summer place I had come to the last 20yrs.

"You cannot go back into the property," he said. The property belongs to your exhusband and you have no right here. Just as he said this, my exhusband came up from behind him telling me to get my phone and "get out of here." The contempt and anger so hateful it took my breath away. They were both menacing on the sand dune a little higher than the small folding beach chair I was sitting in trying to hide the fact I was putting a little shampoo in my hair to rinse off in the lake. I stood up and got my dog—dear God how can this continue.

It was 7pm, dusk had just settled in—my favorite time on the lake. It seemed surreal, only a short time ago I had looked around at all the work we did together and remarked how beautiful it all was. How retiring would be so nice now that all the hardwork was done. "Its not going to go that way," my exhusband said. His eyes went black as night as he spoke. The water was warm that year, but all of a sudden I was so chilled I had to leave where we were swimming and sit on the beach. I didn't dare ask what he meant. Somehing deep inside me knew something was horribly wrong, but it was in that deep place I could not access yet. Some things are preverbal that way—you know, but are not yet able to articulate.

I sat looking out across the lake thinking of that other dusk and where we were now. The horror that was unfolding and the slow painstaking answers I was finding that I had not known that Summer.

"Ma'am, you have to leave!" he said again. Where was I to go I thought. Each property we had worked on all these years was slowly, violently being taken from me.

I was soaking wet. My bathing suit pulling at my thighs—too tight this summer from all the weight I had put on. I was fat, midlife, ashamed and frightened. How could this still be going on? How could these people continue to do this.

9pm I was calling my mother—pleading to stay with her. I hated calling her. It was always the last resort. Even as a kid I rarely called and asked for her help. I learned very little to never ask her for much. She would often do the opposite I asked or punish me, adding to whatever problem there was. Over the years I learned to never be in trouble. The proverbial goodgirl.

I had no money and no place to go. This time I could not even get a room at the local Inn I had stayed a number of times. The horror of my marriage was now slowly destroying my life. Secrets that were put in place as soon as we married were being revealed. Old revenges were now coming to light. Old memories were never what they had seemed. The broken pieces of my life were layers of lies and distortions. A fun-house mirror of relationships designed to deceive me. I was struggling to put my life back together in some decent way, but the pieces were so distorted and shatterred it had become impossible and frightening.

My mother would come of course—always so nice when things were bad. "You think your so smart," she would often say. Who did I think I was, "Miss high and mighty," needs to be taken down a peg or two. I hated having to ask for her help. I hated having to go with her—leave my home and be back in hers. It had been so long. I was told to "get out" when I was 17, lured home by her and family for 2 months at 26 only to be put on the street. Here she was involved yet again, but I was still trying to piece it all together. The betrayal bringing me full-circle.

The deja vu was too much. I knew there was a pattern. My exhusband had been bestfriends with a cousin of mine. Family members I rarely saw, but caused numerous problems for me over the years. Relationships my mother had that resulted in 1/2 siblings and various "relatives" I never knew that hated me. "Blood is thicker than water" they would often say whenever some scheme was unfolding and you were left holding the bag.

"Ma'am! I'm going to ask you one more time to leave," the officer said again. I slowly made my way up to the lake house. My clothes dumped in a pile on the deck. So many household items left inside. So much furniture, knick-knacks, books, sundry items to make the small camp we purchased into a lake home in there also. Our cabin to retire to, our dream place to remodel, our reward for all the hardwork over the years. My dog shivering wanting to go inside wondering why I was sobbing, scrambling, trying to sort some of my clothes in a small suitcase to take with me. Lately, he was so scared, shaking, waking-up in the middle of the night confused—not sure where he was. I was doing the same. Most nights I could not sleep or would wake-up drenched in sweat—panic gripping me forgetting where I was. Do dogs have nightmares? He seem to. We had been forced to move 6 times now. We were both struggling to survive.

As a kid, we moved often. We would get nice places only to have to leave. People did not like the way my mother was living. Different men, different fathers, different boyfriends did not go over well when I was a kid. A time when most in our small community were married. Divorce unheard of, especially kids with different last names who were brothers and sisters. I spent my school years explaining my mothers sexlife. The "blended family" was unheard of. You were either married or living like my mother, which was so wrong, so bad , so dirty it was the subject of constant ridicule, torment and abuse.

The wind had started to pickup, the rain was moving in and it was getting dark. It couldn't get much worse, I thought. The lights from the neighbors camp came on. They had never accepted me. It was humiliating to say the least, but at least I was learning the truth. The ugly classism was much more than name-calling, far more grim and horrible then I could ever imagine when I first married. It started early on, but like most things when I was young—I was convinced I needed to fit in. "Get along" I was told. Pulling myself up by my bootstraps had become a sort of mantra I accepted. Not realizing at the time—it would never matter how good, accomplished and successful I was to become.

Having to "break-in" to a summer place I purchased and worked on with my exhusband for 20 years was bad enough. My keys had been taken and I had been locked-out for 4 years. Now I was being "removed" by the StatePolice. The Sheriffs had arrived when I broke-in. At the time it seemed some respect was paid that we were in fact married and this was in fact "marital property." I was told this was hiding assets, but like everyting else in this nightmare nothing was being done for me. Each of my homes were brutally taken from me. Not only that, but I was being called a "whore" a "prostitute." Instead of a pat on the back, "welfare kid" doing alright, this was the new label that was being setup to once again destroy any decent life I had built.

I was sobbing—old, dark howls coming up through my body. So long ago, so many memories, so much to accept—brutally threatening to kill me. I sat waiting for my mother after another StatePolice arrived to make sure I was leaving. Threatening to call the Psychward if I stayed. He said neighbors would not like me sitting on the beach with no food or water. I thought that kind of ironic. It was exactly what they had wanted all these years.

It got very still as he left and I waited for my mother. The wind calm, the rain stopped, the night had settled in and I was homeless once again. On my way to a place I had promised I would never be again. The nightmare continuing.



June 26, 2018

On The Lake

On the Lake

The days drift slowly by. One into the next as my circumstances continue to deteroriate and the Divorce drags on. More threats of being homeless or sheriffs coming here to force me out of another home I worked twenty years on—thinking that we would retire here.

"Your Divorced," he said violently pushing in the door—not we're Divorced only I am. I know now because he never considered himself married.

I was his slave, his maid, his whore—I was never his wife and everyone knew it. To be used and exploited and when the time came to be left homeless and with nothing. Completely broken—ultimate revenge fantasy of someone who plotted this from the start.

Its taken me the past three years to come to terms with these facts as I'm dragged through the Courtsystem here learning of the way my marriage was setup to ultimately destroy me.

I'm hoping to have a regular writing schedule again. I was thinking of posting from my iphone, but still love my Macbookpro. I am finding I can no longer write with my trusty pen and spiral-bound notebook. Odd, all those years I needed to write with my pen and paper, but now finally transitioned to the laptop—I can't go back.

Writing here has a certain resonance. Infusing the spaces that became so broken with the harmony of nature. Healing the wounds making the sounds of the birds, the small animals, even the breeze and rain seem like balm to my ravaged soul.

The other day I saw a small deer. I thought she was a baby, but out came two even smaller ones—tiny, tiny little ones. She came around from the back cove. I use to walk my first dog there. It was surrounded by these beautiful Pines. I use to pray, meditate there. The stillness was breathtaking, spiritual, peaceful. Over the years, it became blocked off as new neighbors moved in and more people had boats. It made me sad, but seeing her and her fawns gave me such joy and hope. The possibility of new things to come—to start once again. I went for a swim later and heard her—nestled in, safe and protected, enclosed. I wish that for her, for all of us, and for myself.

My home had been my refuge. As I come to terms with the destruction of it, the rebuilding of another and the faith to do it again. I need to believe once again it is possible. Strong in the broken places where the belief in that safe place had been destroyed.